While many people associate medical malpractice with negligence on the part of doctors and surgeons, other medical professionals can be careless in their actions, including nurses.
There are a number of factors that account for medical errors made by nurses throughout the country, including general nurse shortages and hospital downsizing that can contribute to an increased workload. While not every negative experience with a nurse is malpractice, and not every instance of negligence can guarantee you being awarded compensation, it’s still important to hire a medical malpractice lawyer if you suspect your nurse was negligent in their actions.
One of the leading types of malpractice claims against nurse practitioners are medication errors, according to the Nurse Services Organization (NSO).
Common medication errors can include:
- Administering medication that the patient is allergic to
- Administering medication that reacts adversely with another medication the patient is taking
- Administering the wrong medication
- Administering the wrong dosages of a medication
According to the National Practitioner Data Bank, types of nurses include registered nurses (RNs), licensed nurses (LNs), advanced practice nurses (APRNs), and nursing para-professionals. All nurses may be responsible for medication errors, as well as student nurse practitioners, attending doctors, and hospitals.
Tips on Preventing Errors
While it is ultimately the responsibility of your nurse to correctly administer your medication, there are also tips you as the patient can take in order to communicate effectively with your nurse and possibly prevent errors.
Some proactive steps you can take include:
- Making sure your nurse knows about all medicine you’re currently taking: This includes prescriptions, over-the-counter drugs, and vitamins, and can prevent the nurse from giving you a medication that has a dangerous reaction with the medicine you’re already taking.
- Making sure your nurse knows about your allergies or any adverse reactions you have to medicines.
- Making sure your nurse verified your patient information: If your nurse didn’t verify your name, age, weight, and date of birth, they haven’t confirmed whether they’re treating the correct patient.
Another preventative measure you can take is to simply speak up if you have questions or concerns, as you have a right as a patient to question anyone involved with your health care. You may also want a family member to go to appointments for you to have a second opinion.
Accessible to Clients 24/7
The Dickinson Law Firm, LLC has the privilege of being a small firm that can devote all its attention to each of our injured clients. When you join our team, you can expect to be treated like family, and to have all your needs and wishes listened to and respected. Our personal injury lawyers know you’re at your most vulnerable and need our support, which is why we offer free consultations and are available by phone for our clients 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. With our attorneys on your side, you won’t be alone throughout the legal process.
Call The Dickinson Law Firm, LLC today at (770) 766-7739, or contact us online if your nurse has made a medication error, resulting in an illness or injury. Our medical malpractice attorneys are devoted to helping our clients achieve optimal results in their cases, because you don’t deserve to feel worse after a trip to your health care provider.